When we add ‘ever’ to question words it usually means one of the following:
– It doesn’t matter where, who, when, etc. It can be any place, any person, any time, etc.
– An unknown place, person, time, etc.
eg. Whoever wants to go to the beach should get in the car now! (It doesn’t matter who)
Wherever you go I’ll always be with you. (It doesn’t matter where)
Whenever I watch TV I get a headache. ( It doesn’t matter when)
Whoever left the house in such a mess is in trouble! (I don’t know who)
NB: – Whenever can also mean every time. eg. Whenever I ask her out she says she’s busy. (Every time)
– Whichever is usually followed by ‘of’ eg. Whichever of you gets to the theatre first should start queuing for tickets.
– We can use wherever, whoever, however, whatever, whenever and whichever to show surprise or emphasise something. eg. Whatever’s the matter? Wherever is that?
– We can use wherever, whoever, however, whatever, etc. informally to say we don’t really mind. Whatever is the most commonly used and suggests the speaker doesn’t care and therefore sounds rude.